« ZurückWeiter »
Clarence still breathes; Edward still lives, and reigns; When they are gone, then muft I count my gains.
Enter the corfe of Henry the fixth, with halberds to guard it; Lady Anne being the mourner.
Anne. Set down, fet down your honourable load,If honour may be shrouded in a hearfe,Whilft I a while obfequiously laments The untimely fall of virtuous Lancaster.Poor key-cold figure of a holy king! Pale afhes of the house of Lancaster!
Thou bloodlefs remnant of that royal blood!
To hear the lamentations of poor Anne,
Lo, in these windows, that fet forth thy life,
S -obfequiously lament] Obfequious, in this inftance, means funereal. So, in Hamlet, act I. fe. ii:
"To do obfequious forrow." STEEVENS.
-key-cold] A key, on account of the coldness of the metal of which it is compofed, was anciently employed to stop any flight bleeding. The epithet is common to many old writers; among the reft, it is ufed by Decker in his Satiromaftix:
"It is beft you hide your head, for fear your wife brains take key-cold."
Again, in the Country Girl, by T. B. 1647: "The key-cold figure of a man."
More direful hap betide that hated wretch,
If ever he have wife, let her be made
Than I am made by my young lord, and thee!—
And, ftill as you are weary of the weight,
Glo. Stay you, that bear the corfe, and fet it down. Anne. What black magician conjures up this fiend, To stop devoted charitable deeds?
Glo. Villains, fet down the corfe; or, by faint Paul, I'll make a corfe of him that disobeys".
Gen. My lord, ftand back, and let the coffin pafs. Glo. Unmanner'd dog! stand thou when I command:
Advance thy halberd higher than my breast,
Anne. What, do you tremble? are you all afraid?
• I'll make a corfe of him that disobeys.] So, in Hamlet:
Glo. Sweet faint, for charity, be not so curst. Anne. Foul devil, for God's fake, hence, and trouble us not;
For thou haft made the happy earth thy hell,
7 pattern of thy butcheries:] Pattern is inftance, or example: JOHNSON.
Holinfhed fays: "The dead corps on the Afcenfion even was conveied with billes and glaives pompouslie (if you will call that a funerall pompe) from the Tower to the church of faint Paule, and there laid on a beire or coffen bare-faced; the fame in the prefence of the beholders did bleed; where it refted the fpace of one whole daie. From thenfe he was carried to the Black-friers, and bled there likewife; &c." STEEVENS.
-fee, dead Henry's wounds,
Open their congeal'd mouths, and bleed afresh!-]
It is a tradition very generally received, that the murdered body bleeds on the touch of the murderer. This was fo much be lieved by fir Kenelm Digby that he has endeavoured to explain the reafon. JOHNSON.
So, in Arden of Feverfham, 1592:
"The more I found his name, the more he bleeds: "This blood condemns me, and in gufhing forth Speaks as it falls, and asks me why I did it." Again, in the Widow's Tears, by Chapman, 1612:
The captain will affay an old conclufion often approved; that at the murderer's fight the blood revives again and boils afresh; and every wound has a condemning voice to cry out guilty against the murderer."
Again, in the 46th Idea of Drayton :
"If the vile actors of the heinous deed,
"Oft t'hath been prov'd the breathless corps will bleed." Mr. Tollet obferves that this opinion feems to be derived from the ancient Swedes, or Northern nations from whom we defcend; for they practifed this method of trial in dubious cases, as appears from Pitt's Atlas, in Sweden, p. 20. STEEVENS.
See alfo Demonologie, 4to. 1603, p. 79; and Goulart's Admirable and Memorable Hiftories, tranflated by Grimeton, 4to. 1607, p. 422. EDITOR.
Blush, blush, thou lump of foul deformity;
O God, which this blood mad'ft, revenge his death!
Or, earth, gape open wide, and eat him quick;
No beast fo fierce, but knows fome touch of pity.
Anne. Vouchfafe, diffus'd infection of a man,
Glo. Fairer than tongue can name thee, let me have Some patient leisure to excuse myself.
• Vouchsafe, diffus'd infection of a man,] I believe, diffus'd in this place fignifies irregular, uncouth; such is its meaning in other paffages of Shakspeare. JOHNSON.
Diffus'd infection of a man may mean, thou that art as dangerous as á peftilence, that infects the air by its diffufion. Diffus'd may, however, mean irregular. So, in The Merry Wives, &c. -rush at once
"With some diffused fong."
Again, in Green's Farewell to Follie, 1617:
"I have seen an English gentleman fo defufed in his futes; his doublet being for the weare of Caftile, his hose for Venice, &c." STEEVENS,
Anne. Fouler than heart can think thee, thou canft make
No excufe current, but to hang thyself.
Glo. By fuch despair, I fhould accuse myself.
Glo. Nay, he is dead; and flain by Edward's hand. Anne. In thy foul throat thou ly'ft; queen Margaret faw
Thy murderous faulchion smoking in his blood;
Glo. I was provoked by her fland'rous tongue,
Anne. Thou waft provoked by thy bloody mind,
Glo. I grant ye.
Anne. Doft grant me, hedge-hog? then, God grant
Thou may'st be damned for that wicked deed!
Glo. The fitter for the King of heaven that hath him.
▾ That laid their guilt- -] The crime of my brothers. He has juft charged the murder of lady Anne's husband upon Ed, ward. JOHNSON,
O, he was gentle, mild, and virtuous.
I'll do't: but yet fhe is a goodly creature.
"Dion. The fitter then the gods should have her." STEEVENS.